Canadian Blood Services plans to open three new plasma donation clinics to ensure the country stays ahead of the curve in supplying blood. (CBC file photo)

Canadian Blood Services will expand, opening new plasma donation centres

Canadian Blood Services is opening three new plasma donation centres to ensure that the country’s blood supplies do not dwindle.

Canada uses more human plasma products than any other country in the world after the U.S..

Most of it is used as immune globulin (IG) therapy for people with dangerous immune disorders.

Currently, about 14 per cent of the immune globulin is supplied domestically.

The rest is purchased on the world market.

Canadian Blood Services wants to ensure that the plasma supply meets the plasma demand. (CBC)

“That’s not a secure supply for Canadian patients,” Dr. Graham Sher, the CEO of Canadian Blood Services, said on Wednesday in announcing the clinics, which will be located in Sudbury, Ont., Lethbridge, Alta., and Kelowna, B.C.

“This is ultimately all about making sure we have enough plasma under our control in Canada to ensure secure supply of immunoglobin for Canadian patients who need it.

An estimated 10,000 Canadians receive IG and other plasma treatments annually.

About 25 per cent, or 2,500 people, have genetic life-threatening illness where IG is the only option.

Plasma is a clear component of blood processed to manufacture the therapies.

Canadian blood supplies tend to ebb and flow and rarely does a year pass when when Canadian Blood Services does not issue an urgent call for donors.

The Sudbury clinic is scheduled to begin collections next spring, the Lethbridge clinic next fall, and the Kelowna clinic in the spring of 2021.

With files from CBC, CP

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